closure, control, and peace of spirit

Closure, Control and Peace of Spirit

🎶It’s the most wonderful time of the year…🎶 Until it’s not. 

Many of us have family members that we’ll see at one or more gatherings that set our teeth on edge. Let’s take a minute for some reflection here. Are you still upset about that thing that happened years ago? Let’s be clear that I’m not talking about abuse of any kind. I’m talking about some really minor incident that frankly didn’t matter 5 minutes later, but you’re still holding onto that grudge. The holidays are also a time for closure, acknowledging our areas of control, and enhancing the peace of our spirits. 

 It is natural to want an explanation, apology, and some kind of resolution when we feel wronged. But please, please, please don’t hold on to things waiting for an apology that is never coming. Sometimes, the other person isn’t even aware that they hurt your feelings. I remember going through anger management because I was stressing my body out. My doctor told me that my heart was behaving like I was about to have a stroke - I was 32. The things that I was angry about were downright silly, like my sister breaking the heel on my shoe (8 years prior). When I tell you I have had to put in some work to be the person I am today, believe that.

There are two ways that you can seek closure, asking the other person for it and creating it for yourself. While it may be beneficial to include others, that also moves getting closure out of the realm of your control. Here are some suggestions for obtaining closure. 
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Image by Simon Berger from Pixabay

Asking Others for Closure 

  • Clarify your motives. Be honest with yourself. What is the outcome do you desire? Having realistic expectations could protect you from additional distress. 
  •  Keep it simple. Dwelling on the past interferes with your future happiness. Cover the most important issues and then shift your attention to enjoying the rest of your life. Take responsibility. It might tempt you to blame the other person for your situation, but you’re still in charge of how you react. Acknowledge your own shortcomings and apologize if appropriate. 
  •  Stay positive. Let them know if you’re thankful for their kindness. Try to forgive each other for any disappointments. 
  •  Write a letter. Pouring your feelings out in writing may help, especially if you reflect on what you can learn from the experience. Reread the letter when you’re calm, so you can decide whether to send it or burn it. 
  • Meet for coffee. If you feel strong enough, you may prefer to talk face-to-face. Arrange a coffee date or a lunchtime walk, so you can leave with no awkwardness.

coffeee and conversations

Photo by Juan Vargas from Pexels

Creating Closure for Yourself: 

  •  Slow down. Sometimes the desire for closure is so strong that you might jump to hasty conclusions about your ex and yourself. Give yourself time to sort through your memories and discover their meaning. 
  •  Avoid contact. Maybe you’ll wind up being friends, but most couples need to distance when they first break up. Resist the urge to call your ex and stay off their social media pages. Put away photographs and other reminders lying around your home and office. 
  •  Practice self-care. Protecting your physical and mental wellbeing will help you to make sound decisions. Eat a healthy diet, exercise regularly, and get 7 to 8 hours of sleep each night. Spend time each day hanging out with family and friends and doing activities you love. 
  •  Journal. Recording your daily thoughts and activities can help you deal with stress, too. You’ll be able to spot recurring patterns and see where you’re making progress. To stay on track, try writing at the same time each day, like first thing in the morning or before bed. 
  •  Be flexible. Life is full of sudden changes. Learning to adapt increases your chances for success. Set new goals and let go of regrets. Cultivate your curiosity. 
  •  Consider counseling. Talking with a therapist could help if you’ve tried to recover from your breakup, but you’re still struggling. A caring professional can help you see your options more objectively and support you while you navigate through a difficult time.
Remember that you are worthy of love and respect. It may take time and effort to heal from past events, but you can attain closure with or without cooperation from others. The sooner you resolve your feelings, the sooner you’ll be ready to move on. 


Stop Worrying About What You Can't Control

There’s a saying that says, “Worry is interest paid on a debt you may not owe,” and it is true! How many of the things we worry about are things that we can’t control? We worry about the world situation, we worry about what’s on TV, we worry about what our neighbors think, and we worry about lots of smaller things.


But here’s the question, how many of those things actually affect our lives? How many of those things can we actually do something about? 

  • We can worry about the news, but we can’t solve all the world’s problems. 
  • We worry about what our neighbors think, but we can’t change their minds and what they think doesn’t affect us. 
  • We turn molehills into mountains with worry, and it affects everything in our lives. 

 So, rather than worrying over all the things we can’t control, let's accept that the problems are there and do what we can instead. For example, instead of worrying about the climate crisis on the big picture scale, maybe let that motivate you to do something more local. You might not be able to solve the big problem, but you can certainly go green, recycle more, grow a garden, and reuse things instead of throwing them away in your own household. This will help keep your spirit calm because you are acting within your sphere of influence instead of simply worrying. Sometimes doing what you can do for a cause is enough.

peace

Photo by Maria Orlova from Pexels

Peace 

There is a kids' movie called Kung Fu Panda. One of the major themes of this movie is the concept of ‘inner peace.’ It’s a state where you are completely at peace with yourself and your surroundings, and nothing can really sway you. You can call it inner peace or peace of spirit or stoicism, but whatever it is, it is often something we need in today’s world. But how do we create peace of spirit? Sometimes it appears that everything is dedicated to being unpeaceful. It seems like whichever direction we turn, everyone is fighting, disagreeing, and getting angry over every little thing, and it can be very hard to remain peaceful in the face of all that. When someone gets mad at you for your opinion, it can be very hard not to want to fight back.


 Meditation is a powerful tool for getting your spirit to peace, and you can (and should) use all these powerful techniques in today’s world.


Worry is an emotion, and like all emotions, it's helpful to you in moderation. However, when they start to overwhelm and overpower you, you can find yourself a slave to them. Whenever you feel a rising tide of worry, you can attempt to slow it down by mediating and focusing on the worry itself. Take this time to ask yourself if the worry is even worth it to you, and then focus on blunting the emotion and letting it go.


Keeping yourself calm and peaceful during turbulent times can be a massive challenge, but whenever it comes down to it, focusing on tough times with a calm mind and a peaceful spirit is much better than the alternative where you face them with a turbulent spirit and mind.
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It might take some time and practice, but you will be grateful for it whenever the tough times come around and you can face them calmly. People depend on that whenever a crisis happens, and they will look to you for leadership if you can portray these values. 


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 I hope you enjoyed this article. Please leave a comment or share it to help someone else through their journey with change. Is it time for you to pivot? Change can be difficult, but you don't have to walk that path alone. Subscribe to my newsletter to get inspired and take action towards becoming a better you.

Author

  • A bit about me. I was born and raised in rural North Carolina, and currently call Virginia home. My birthdate says I'm a "boomer" but my heart and soul is much more "gen x". The adjectives that describe me best are writer, entrepreneur, and gamer (Yes, I love playing video games). What brings me the most joy? Spending time with my granddaughters.

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